You guys! Promise me you'll try this recipe?
But first, a word of warning: straight out of the oven, this bread doesn't last long... especially if you have some homemade raspberry jam lying around.
At around 100 calories per slice, this bread cannot be beat!! My sister in-law taught me how to make it, and after seeing how easy it was, I had to give it a try. Seven ingredients (with one being water), this is a bread recipe you won't be intimidated by. ;)
Yields three loaves, or about 48 slices (16 per loaf)
4 cups warm water
(*^Okay, this may sound funny, but here's how I easily gauge the temperature of my water... you want the water warm enough that you'd shower in it, but not too warm that you wouldn't wash your face in it... sounds funny, but it helps!*)
3 Tbsp. active dry yeast
1/4 cup wheat gluten (*I love Red Mill's wheat gluten- picture at bottom)
1/2 cup oil (either vegetable oil or olive oil would work fine)
1/2 cup raw honey
6 cups whole wheat flour + up to 3 more, if needed
1 1/2 Tbsp. real sea salt (This is my favorite salt)
1. Combine warm water and yeast into your mixture (*make sure you read my tip on the temperature of the water. Also, I use my Bosch to make this bread with the bread hook and it turns out amazing.) Let it bubble and froth up, about 2-4 minutes.
2. Once yeast has bubbled up, add other ingredients. With the flour, start with the initial 6 cups, and then mix. Stop to look at your dough. You will want your dough to start retracting and pulling away from the dough hook on the mixer. If it's still sticking to that hook, slowly add in another cup and analyze again. You don't have to add in all 9 cups of flour. It took me 8 cups of flour to get my dough just right. Once you see that dough become elastic enough to start pulling away from your dough hook when your mixer stops (and it will still be a little sticky!), it has enough flour. Be careful not to add too much.
3. Once the dough is just right, knead for about 10 minutes. (I just turned the Bosch to the #2/#3 setting and let it do its thing.)
4. Once the dough has finished kneading, split into three equal parts, cover with cloth, and place in medium size bowls to let rise for 30 minutes to an hour, or until double in size. This dough rises quick!
5. Grease bread pans and hands (since dough is a little sticky still).
6. Shape into three loaves and put into bread pans. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. While oven is preheating, the dough will already begin to rise slightly in pans.
7. Once your oven is preheated, stick loaves in and cook for 30-35 minutes. Bread should be light golden brown when it's done. Brush the top with some butter when removed from oven.
8. As bread is cooling in pan, try not to drool too much, turn the pan to the side, and the bread should come out easy. Once bread is cooled, store in a sealed plastic bag for a softer, chewier bread.
Enjoy!! (Nutrition facts at bottom)